• Type:
  • Loop

  • Difficulty:
  • Hard

  • Scenery Ranking:
  • 4/5

  • Accessibility:
  • Easily Accessible

  • Trail Maintenance:
  • Well Maintained

  • Facilities:
  • None

Machine Falls in the Short Springs Natural Area

Joe Wheeler Day Use Area Joe Wheeler Day Use Area Joe Wheeler Day Use Area Joe Wheeler Day Use Area


Machine Falls is a scenic waterfall located in the Short Springs Natural Area near Tullahoma, TN. The hike to the fall is short but steep as you make your way to the bottom. It is well worth the two mile round trip. You can also add to your hike by hiking the other loops (about six mile round trip if you add all of those).

Trail Head:

The trail head is located across the road from the parking area. The parking area fills up quick so get there early. Google Maps may take you a different location than the parking area. The main parking area will be easy to find because there is a large water tower right beside of it. Powell Road will be where you park.


I rated this "hard" only because the hike back out has a very steep climb as you exit the bottom of Machine Falls. The rest of the hike is pretty easy.

Hiking the Trail:

Although there are other loops in the Short Springs Natural Area I will be discussing the hike down to Machine Falls. From the main trail head you will just continue hiking while following the signs directing you to Machine Falls. The trails area well marked and easy to follow. You will find a sign at each trail intersection, just keep following the sign to Machine Falls. The hike straight to the waterfall and back is probably around a two mile round trip. If you add in all the other loops you are probably looking at a five to six mile round trip. For sake of time I was only able to hike to Machine Falls. I did hike a short distance on another trail but that was all. There is a trail map on a kiosk at the main parking area, so snap a pic of it to have on your phone to help guide your hike.


You will get great views of Machine Falls, and also great views along the creeks and woodland located in the Short Springs Natural Area.

Trail Maintenance:

The trail is well maintained


There are no facilities on the trail or at the trail head. If you need to use the restroom or get supplies you can stop in down town Tullahoma which is not far from the parking area.